At Money Support Group, we are strong advocates of financial education within schools and it is an issue that needs to be spoken about on Talk Money Week. However, any reforms could take a long time to come into place and that means parents must be prepared to financially educate their children.
A poll from MoneyHelper found that less than half of UK parents are talking to their children about important financial knowledge.
Talking about money to others can alleviate stress and it makes you less likely to commit to a bad financial situation.
58% of parents who are confident about handling their money are almost twice as likely to teach their kids about money than those who are not confident with their ability to handle money (33%).
Data shows that people in London and the North West are the most likely to discuss money with their children.
Those in the capital city are generally on a higher source of income and London is widely considered as the leading UK city for business and financial gain. With that in mind, many Londoners are likely to have a solid understanding of financial handling themselves.
By contrast, the North West generally has a lower average wage than many other parts of the country. It is 6th in the median wage per-UK region, although this figure is propped up by the wages within the city of Manchester. This means that many parents will see it as their responsibility to teach about budgeting and careful money management.
However, that means lots of other regions will have children who are left behind. Remember, there isn’t a written law telling parents to educate their children on all things financial. Many would argue that it is the role of school teachers to prepare children for the rigours of everyday life.
54% of parents do discuss money matters with children aged 11-17 but only 40% do the same for children under the age of 11. The knowledge that is developed through childhood is taken on board and retained often as it sticks onto the mind so teaching basic monetary education at a young age should absolutely be encouraged.
MoneyHelper has produced a recommended booklet, Talk, Learn, Do: Teaching your children about money. This suggests educating young children about money through games, putting them in a good position before they reach high school.
The numbers that have been discussed show how important it is to bring some kind of financial education into our school curriculum. Starting from simple budgeting techniques, children should progressively learn about financial situations. Bank accounts, taxes, and the state of pensions should eventually be brought to the table.
Unfortunately, the burden of real-life education often sits with parents because schools do not fit enough real-life discussion into their weekly schedules.
This means that parents should be looking to help their children from a young age, all the way through to adulthood. Being open with money is just the start. Having an open and no-boundaries filled discussion on any topical matter could be vitally important for the mental health of a child, but also the mental health of a parent and the general wellbeing of a family.